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Q/A: Sam Kitchin & Luke Grooms of 'Jerry Springer' Get Down & Dirty

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BroadwayWorld brings an exclusive "Down and Dirty" Q/A series with the cast of Jerry Springer The Opera in Concert... What's it like for these Broadway belters to perform the hilarious lyrics of such a potty-mouth and acclaimed production? What are these scandalous stars looking forward to?

Joining Harvey Keitel as "Jerry Springer" are Max von Essen as "Tremont," a transsexual involved in a love quadrangle, and Tony Award Nominee Emily Skinner as "Andrea," whose diaper-loving husband is having an affair with Baby Jane. Plus Linda Balgord as "Zandra, Irene & Mary," Lawrence Clayton as "Montel & Jesus," Luke Grooms as "Dwight & God," Sean Jennes as "Chucky," Sam Kitchin as "Steve," Patricia Phillips as "Peaches" and Laura Shoop as "Baby Jane."

Jerry Springer The Opera is inspired by America's most lurid TV talk show host who brought worldwide television audiences episodes including "Pregnant by a Transsexual," "Here Come the Hookers" and "I Refuse to Wear Clothes." The show opened in London to unprecedented rave reviews.

The smash hit London musical Jerry Springer The Opera will play Carnegie Hall (881 7th Avenue) for two nights only on January 29 and 30, 2008.

Sam Kitchin (Steve)

TV's "The Jerry Springer Show" hit the airwaves in 1991 and recently celebrated its 3,000th episode.  Over the years, it has established a cult following.  What, in your opinion, attracts people in droves to the talk show?

Because the show is so painfully real, revealing many of the skeletons that have hidden in closets for years and the often lurid nature of these skeletons made it even more fun to watch!

Do you watch "The Jerry Springer Show?"  Do you have a favorite topic or episode?

I rarely watched an entire episode. I often tuned in for five to ten minutes to catch the gist of the conflict, but I could rarely stay with an entire episode. For me it was too painful to watch, I felt too much sympathy for the people involved.

What excites you most about being a part of the cast of Jerry Springer The Opera in Concert at Carnegie Hall?

Well, it is at Carnegie Hall and that is a place I never thought I would play.  My father-in-law is the longest serving member of the National Symphony Orchestra and has played Carnegie Hall many times, now I can say that he is not the only one!  Also, I love musicals and came up doing musicals, but since moving to New York in 1998 have not done one so that was exciting.  Although, I did not know this when I was cast, working with Harvey Keitel will obviously be a great experience. I love learning from the best! Finally, I have to say that after reading the piece and seeing the score, I cannot wait to blow away some innocent audience members with a truly remarkable piece of theatre.

If you were to guest on "The Jerry Springer Show," what would the topic be?

It would be the worst show ever.  Something like: "This man forgot to put grub killer in his lawn this spring.  We are going to talk to the people he betrayed!" Or maybe "This man has a secret...he forgot to change his daughter's diapers because he was watching football!  We will discuss that when we return from this commercial."  That is about it for me these days...pure excitement!

Luke Grooms (Dwight / God)

TV's "The Jerry Springer Show" hit the airwaves in 1991 and recently celebrated its 3,000th episode.  Over the years, it has established a cult following.  What, in your opinion, attracts people in droves to the talk show?

I think that the draw of "The Jerry Springer Show" is the car wreck affect!  You know when you pass a wreck on the road, and you don't want to look, but you have to.  I mean I grew up in Tennessee, and to be honest, I knew some of those people!  Also, the show is just a good time - nothing too heavy, nothing that can change the world, just some folks hashing it out!

Do you watch "The Jerry Springer Show?"  Do you have a favorite topic or episode?

I used to watch the show a lot and my favorite episodes were the ones where a man was seeing a woman and her mother or sister, or both.  I also loved those klan ones, boy did we hate them!

What excites you most about being a part of the cast of Jerry Springer The Opera in Concert at Carnegie Hall?

I think I am excited most by the fact that I get to do a piece that pushes the limit and will make an impression.  I think Broadway needs shows that push boundaries.  Hell, not just Broadway but all the arts.  Fun music, good subject matter, and great performers are what it boils down to.

If you were to guest on "The Jerry Springer Show," what would the topic be?

Oh, I don't know! In my own mind it would be, "Opera singer secretly dreams of being a Broadway star!"  More than likely it would be a show about who I slept with, lol!

Tickets for Jerry Springer The Opera – In Concert are $175.00 - $59.00 and are available now through CarnegieCharge at (212) 247-7800 or www.carnegiehall.org or by visiting the Carnegie Hall box office (57th Street & 7th Avenue).  Performances are Tuesday, January 29, 2008 at 8PM and Wednesday, January 30, 2008 at 8PM


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